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Silver Dagger
Where are your taunts now, costumed clown!?
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Amazing Spider-Man Vol 4 1.6 Textless.jpg
Where d'you want 'em, Baldy?
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Appearing in "If I'm To Live...My Love Must Die!"

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Synopsis for "If I'm To Live...My Love Must Die!"

Spider-Man and Ms. Marvel, still disguised as ordinary people, crouch over the inert form of Dr. Strange in the sanctum of Marie LaVeau, the Witch-Queen of New Orleans. The witch-queen has taken the astral form of Dr. Strange to an alien dimension, where he hopes to learn the spells that will liberate his disciple and lover, Clea, whose soul is imprisoned within the realm of the Orb of Agamotto. Strange does not trust Marie, but he has no alternative. Thus, as the mystic master and the witch-queen pass out of realms that he knows into ones he has never explored, he opens his mind for full telepathic rapport with her. The agony is unendurable, but he realizes that there can be no turning back. Whatever happens, he is at her mercy.

As soon as Strange telepathically links with Marie LaVeau, suddenly Clea unleashes a devastating attack that breaks through his shield. Unfortunately, Silver Dagger, at last, begins to gather his mystic powers. Using spells, he slowly forces Spider-Man and Ms. Marvel back into Marie LaVeau's sanctum and then a spell shoves Spider-Man against the crystalline Orb of Agamotto. Tentacles emerge from the sphere and pull him inside as Ms. Marvel strives with her Kree powers to counter Dagger's magic. But when Spider-Man enters the Orb, parts of his reality overwhelm the reality — the domain of Dormammu — that Clea is trying to recreate within the Orb to destroy Dr. Strange. Thus an image of the Punisher machine-guns Clea in a surprise attack, and Dr. Strange quickly overpowers her. At the same time, Silver Dagger casts a spell that makes him grow in size and strength, but before he can defeat Ms. Marvel, he collapses, struck from behind by his own dagger, wielded by Marie LaVeau. Thus, at midnight, Wong is startled in Dr. Strange's Sanctum Sanctorum when Ms. Marvel, Strange, Spider-Man, Marie LaVeau, the unconscious Silver Dagger, and the Orb of Agamotto all materialize behind him.

Strange quickly frees Clea's soul from the Orb, adding a spell to keep her from remembering her experiences until he can investigate everything that happened. As she revives and embraces him, he wonders what part of her was represented by the fire-demon that he fought, and where and how she learned to wield its power. The mortally wounded Silver Dagger is quickly transferred back to his prison in the Orb, where he will remain alive but helpless. It is risky to keep Dagger alive, thinks Strange, for if he should ever face death and survive, and thereby attain true enlightenment, his next battle against Strange might end differently. Then Strange thanks, Spider-Man and Ms. Marvel for their invaluable aid, and he asks Marie to explain how she managed to overcome Silver Dagger's spells.

She replies that she was able to bend them enough to send Strange the warning in the tarot cards and later to send her acolytes to slay Strange's physical form when they were both in the astral plane. Had Strange been slain, Silver Dagger would have remained trapped forever within the Orb of Agamotto. She serves the Old Gods, she continues, and even though Silver Dagger promised to spare her if she served him, she knew that he was lying, and so she bided her time until the appropriate moment to strike. Then, as she casts a spell to transport herself to New Orleans, she tells Strange to heed the tarot, for its prophecy is not yet done. As Strange holds Clea, he thinks of the final card of the tarot layout, the Tower. It is the most ominous card in the deck, portending his utter destruction. In saving Clea, he may have lost his own soul forever.


Continuity Notes

  • An Ankh appears on Doctor Strange's forehead, a mystical ability that warns him when he is in mortal danger. This is an ability he gained in Doctor Strange (Vol. 2) #4.
  • Stephen Strange was originally imprisoned inside the Orb of Agamotto by Silver Dagger in Doctor Strange Vol 1 1.

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